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Copyright Office Rejects CARP Recommendations 153

Posted by michael
from the pay-the-piper dept.
dave-fu writes "This just in: webcasters can breathe a sigh of relief as common sense and good taste has won out over stuffed suits and greased pockets--CARP has been rejected. If you weren't aware of it, CARP would have imposed exorbitant fees on webcasters, effectively killing webcasting radiostations, or at least preventing them from playing all (American) copyrighted music." See our previous story, or saveinternetradio.org, or read through the Copyright Office page linked above for background information. I wouldn't rejoice just yet - while webcasters argued that the proposed rates were way too high, the RIAA argued that they were way too low. There will still be royalty rates set by the Copyright Office, and the final rates may not be anything to cheer about.
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Copyright Office Rejects CARP Recommendations

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  • Yes! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gleffler (540281) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:50AM (#3558779) Journal
    This is good, but like the article said, I think we need to continue campaigning to the LOC so that the royalty rates they DO set are reasonable. Nothing could kill off Internet radio like deathly royalties.
    /gleffler
    • Re:Yes! (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Metropolis isn't part of the RIAA and fully supports non-licensed web broadcasters - cuz it's free publicity. Check em out- good music to boot as well.

      http://www.metropolis-records.com/

  • by Boulder Geek (137307) <archer@goldenagewireless.net> on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:51AM (#3558781)
    Librarians are the true modern heros. Go hug one today.

  • Common Sense (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Alizarin Erythrosin (457981) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:52AM (#3558792)
    Hopefully common sense will be used when setting rates. Internet broadcast requires more costs (in theory) then regular radio broadcasts.

    With regular radio broadcasts, the number of listeners has no impact on your ability to deliver content (in this case, music). With internet broadcasts, the more users you have, you need to have more bandwidth to be able to serve them content at the same data rate. In some (most?) cases more bandwidth leads to more expenditure of $$$.

    If the other expenses of internet radio stations are to be considered in setting of these royalty rates (which I think is BS in the first place, the RIAA is too damn greedy) I should hope they will use common sense and set them lower.

    • Hopefully common sense will be used when setting rates. Internet broadcast requires more costs (in theory) then regular radio broadcasts.

      Hmmm....well, in theory, the costs of an FCC license and signal amplifiers, antennas, etc are pretty damn expensive as well. I'd be interested in a montly cost summary between the two if one existed. I have to believe that it's cheaper to run an Internet based station. Bandwidth isn't that expensive. Here in silicon valley, we're getting very competitive rates for full rate T1's (< $600) from Worldcom (are they bankrupt yet), Globix (are they bankrupt yet>), etc.

      Hmmm, maybe I don't have a good bandwidth point...

      Given the fact that anyone and everyone seems to have an internet radio station and that it takes some serious corporate money to deal with the FCC.....

      • Here in the U.K. only a handful (maybe two handfuls at most) of the hundreds of radio stations have web broadcasts. This is probably down to both cost & demand.
    • by grytpype (53367) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:34PM (#3559160) Homepage
      I read the Librarian of Congress's order, and it doesn't say WHY the CARP recommendation was rejected. Nor could I find a press release explaining the decision, although there might be one forthcoming.

      You're all assuming that the LoC wants Internet radio to be free, or cheaper than CARP wanted, but that might not be the case! Maybe the LoC wants HIGHER royalty rates!
    • by rwa2 (4391)
      Wasn't multicast developed to tackle this kind of problem? They should theoretically be able to broadcast one stream and have it routed to all of their listeners. If it can't work in IPv4 on the current internet, what about with IPv6?

      Come on, this is the stuff that's supposed to drive in new technology!
      • The late Don Crabb always used to say on the Steve Dahl Show [dahl.com]: Pornography Drives Technology. If/when video files can be tossed around like audio streams, THAT's when you'll get these problems ironed out.
  • by lemonhed (412041) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:53AM (#3558805) Journal
    The requirements under CARP

    A) The name of the service
    B) The channel of the program (AM/FM stations use station id)
    C) The type of program (Archived/Looped/Live)
    D) Date of Transmission
    E) Time of Transmission
    F) Time zone of origination of Transmission
    G) Numeric designation of the place of the sound recording within the program
    H) Duration of transmission (to nearest second)
    I) Sound Recording Title
    J) The ISRC code of the recording
    K) The release year of the album per copyright notice and in the case of compilation albums, the release year of the album and copyright date of the track
    L) Featured recording artist
    M) Retail album title
    N) The recording Label
    O) The UPC code of the retail album
    P) The catalog number
    Q) The copyright owner information
    R) The musical genre of the channel or program (station format)

    And a listener's log listing:
    1) The name of the service or entity
    2) The channel or program
    3) the date and time that the user logged in (the user's timezone)
    4) the date and time that the user logged out (the user's timezone)
    5) The time zone where the signal was received (user)
    6) Unique User identifier
    7) The country in which the user received the transmissions
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:54AM (#3558807)
    This is an air of relief for our college radiostation, because for a long time Internet has been our primary broadcasting medium. We were getting ready to find ways to recover our outreach, if our Internet outlet was cut off by CARP's rates.

    We don't get too wide of a listening audience (compared to your average commercial webcaster), but it's still important that Internet maintains a wide variety of webcasters.

    Note the article says that the final decision is to be made on June 20, so it's not over yet. We have put up flyers and a notice on our web page about the rates, but it's been difficult to raise awareness to this issue: most people just don't care.

    (sorry, anon at work..)
    • the whole thing is damn scary.... i work at WKDU in Philly. Drexel U college radio. we broadcast FM, but have also been webcasting for a few years. the requirements they wanted were financially impossible as well as technically. unlike crappy top 40 radio, we do not have a pre-pregrammed rotation of songs from a hard drive. we play records. many of the records are released by artists themselves and only 500 or 1,000 exist in the world. there is no way to send out the track data while the song is streaming when you play records. i would say over half of our DJs mostly play records. 90% of the reggae we have is from old 7"s, the dance DJs mix live during their sets, the punk DJs play CDs if the stuff is new, but our record library goes back to the 60s and is full of good vinyl. there is absolutately no way to digitize it.
      the regualtions they were/are shooting for are totally targetted at mainstream commercial stations. i think in the process they wanted to take out all small, low budget internet only stations.
      a few years ago we pondered ditching the music that is copywritten and therefore falls under this proposal. it's not really possible. a lot of indie music is registered, plus all it takes is one band doing one cover song to blow the whole thing. ARGH!
      hopefully the revised deal will make more sense to non-commercial stations.
  • by crow (16139) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:56AM (#3558832) Homepage Journal
    Isn't the use of copyrighted works a matter of getting permission from the rights holder? Can't the rights holder insist on whatever royalty payment system he feels is appropriate?

    It may not be very nice, but if the RIAA wants to keep its music from being webcast, I don't see why the government should stop them. If they want to charge royalty rates that effectively do the same thing, that's their bad business decision.

    So why is the Copyright Office involved?
  • Good, but... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Sc00ter (99550) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:57AM (#3558843) Homepage
    As much as CARP sucks, there needs to be some form of payment for commercial internet radio stations to some degree. Otherwise this would give the internet radio stations and advantage over the normal stations. I don't see why they just couldn't use the same ASCAP/BMI stuff that they use for normal radio and apply it to internet radio also.

    One thing that lots of the places seemed to bitch about was the tracking of the listeners. Now, I know that they wanted it to be retroactive to the DMCA and that's just stupid, but from say now on, what's the big deal? Can't a log parser do this in no time? Just track unique hosts or something like that. If they just needed numbers it should be a no brainer, even something like webalizer can give you those numbers if you set it up right.

    • Re:Good, but... (Score:5, Informative)

      by akb (39826) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:07PM (#3558936)
      I don't see why they just couldn't use the same ASCAP/BMI stuff that they use for normal radio and apply it to internet radio also.

      Web radio stations are already supposed to pay ASCAP/BMI, this is on top of and far more than those fees.

      I wish people would take it upon themselves to be more informed before posting.

      • Yeah. Traditional broadcasters don't have to pay these CARP type fees. For traditional broadcasters, the record labels consider airplay to be promotion, and therefore waive royalty fees. With webcasting they claim that it is distribution, and not broadcasting and that they therefore should recieve royalty payments. Unfortunately, the DMCA backs this up.
        • For traditional broadcasters, the record labels consider airplay to be promotion, and therefore waive royalty fees.

          I worked for a radio station. No, the record labels do not waive royalty fees for traditional broadcasters. Traditional broadcasters are required to pay royalties to ASCAP/BMI which in turn gives some of that to the record companies and some to the songwriters They keep a log of what songs have been played and then pay a small (in cents) royalty everytime a song is played.

          What CARP seeks to do is have a fee over and above that because users can capture the streams to a file and (theoretically) have a flawless reproduction of the original.

          • What CARP seeks to do is have a fee over and above that because users can capture the streams to a file and (theoretically) have a flawless reproduction of the original.

            Unfortunately, CARP does not do anything to break out something for "non-flawless" broadcasts. I work on a four hour live streaming video show that uses music. We don't use full quality audio in the stream because of the video. However, we are still treated as if we are transmitting CD quality. No one could make a decent copy from the audio we send out. We don't mind paying a reasonable fee, like ASCAP/BMI/SESAC but CARP was horrid in both cost and reporting. Heck, ours is a totally donation funded show with no advertising. CARP would have been instant death for us. I am hoping for something a little more reasoned.
    • Re:Good, but... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by sphix42 (144155) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:12PM (#3558973) Homepage
      >>there needs to be some form of payment for commercial internet radio stations to some degree. Otherwise this would give the internet radio stations and advantage over the normal stations

      And how's that? I can't get internet radio in my car. I only listen to the radio at home for very specific programs (prairie home companion, car talk...).

      I use internet radio when I'm buried in a building with bad reception and I have something specific I want to listen to (9/11 coverage) or when I am looking for a very specific genre.

      Do air-wave radio stations track the number of listeners at any particular time? Not that I know of.

      During Diane Rehm's show yesterday, the riaa said they would go lower on licensing costs if they 'liked' the radio station. Because of that comment, I now feel the riaa wants these high music tariffs so they can use them as payola. If you play music they like, they drop your costs (possibly to 0), but if they don't, you pay the way-to-much amount and are forced out of business.

      What's good for the goose is good for the gander....if internet radio must pay fees, they must be equal to those paid my commercial stations _without_ enronaccounting (formerly known as payola).
      • The only thing I was saying about the tracking was that people made it sound that it would be next to impossible, that they would need extra staff to do it. I just didn't understand what was so hard about implementing the tracking. I think it's kinda silly, but I don't think it would be a burden for the internet station, as the logs should be taking care of most of it already.

    • I think that saying the commercial internet radio stations have an advantage over commercial radiative stations (assuming, for the moment, that the internet commercial stations aren't just divisions of a traditional, pump-out-radio-waves place) is not as obviously true as you may assume. They are related but fairly different enterprises.

      Internet radio stations have lower equipment costs to broadcast, but their users have much higher equipment costs to listen (the cheapest computer you'll be able to use to listen to a net stream will probably set you back 250-350 american dollars, not to mention the cost of net access, and how much does a decent little am/fm thing cost? maybe 20 bucks?). Also, for a net radio station to reach and service the same number of potential users as a 100,000 watt radio tower (which could be in the tens to hundreds of thousands depending on where the tower is), I'm betting the bandwidth costs would far exceed the FCC frequency license... Staff costs would be about the same, as would things like office space.

      So, basically, it's not a trivial thing to compare sound-broadcast-places that use different mediums of transmission, because each one has fundamentally different economic constraints.

      With regard to tracking listeners, this is far less trivial than you would assume. A simple log parser isn't going to do it (... to the standard of precision they wanted, anyway). Hell, all of AOL shows up as coming from a handful of IPs in west virginia. NATing gateways are common, so that one IP could be a college kid in Nebraska or thirty people in a branch office in Texas or ...

    • One thing that lots of the places seemed to bitch about was the tracking of the listeners. Now, I know that they wanted it to be retroactive to the DMCA and that's just stupid, but from say now on, what's the big deal? Can't a log parser do this in no time? Just track unique hosts or something like that. If they just needed numbers it should be a no brainer, even something like webalizer can give you those numbers if you set it up right.
      That's just it. The reporting requirements are the worst part. At our radio station [ktru.org], the extra fees would "only" add up to several hundred dollars per year -- not fun, but it wouldn't sink the station.

      We play an eclectic range of material -- much of which comes in the mail, unsolicited, directly from the artist, and some of which is brought in by the DJs. We have no sort of centralized tracking system for our 10,000+ records/CDs... many of which were never actually published through traditional channels, and hence can't easily be cataloged according to the CARP recomendations.

      To even begin to comply, we would have to locate and key in information for each and every one of those albums. Then, we'd have to track what's played -- but as we're not a top-40s station with a small playlist, individual DJs have quite a free hand in choosing what they play, and we're only now beginning to move from pencil and paper to a computerized database to record track titles and artist names; even that is fraught with problems.

      To comply with the law as proposed, our only option would be to stop streaming while we tried to pay someone to implement all of the above -- which likely would never happen, and we'd lose literally thousands of regular listeners.

  • by MikeOttawa (551441) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:57AM (#3558848)
    The problem with regulating internet technolgies with legislation is that the technology required can be moved to any location.

    If the United States makes it illegal/expensivie to operate an internet radio station, the radio station can simply move its servers to another location (lets say Canada or UK) where the regulation doesn't exist (yet). There is no visible effect on the service to the user, and the American government successfully alienates another new technology. In the mean time other contries will benefit from the short-sightedness of another.

    In the end, you cannot continue to support an outmoded business model with legislation and regulation (if this worked in the past it certainly won't work in a "Global Economy").

  • by floppy ears (470810) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:58AM (#3558855) Homepage
    The CARP fees were totally outrageious. Their purpose was (or, is) to destroy Internet radio. This would leave the major labels with virtually no competition to their radio monopoly.As an independent artist, it's good to hear at least some occasional good news.
    • As an independent artist I would think you would want CARP. That way you could give internet stations your music for free or for whatever you want them to pay since it's your music, not the RIAA's. If anything this would be great for people like you, because internet stations would be starving for content (not being able to play RIAA music) and people like you could fill the void.

      • I hope you are right. Unfortunately I think it's more likely that if CARP fees end up being too high, it will just kill Internet radio altogether, and I will be left without the one distribution channel that will currently play my music.
      • Internet radio wouldn't be starving for content they would be starving for cash. Which most likely means they would have to adopt a top-40 format to meet those fees. Which of course would kill any variety in internet radio.

        I don't think its mere coincidence that the RIAA gives its own people (broadcast radio) a price break when doing internet radio. This has all been a ploy to eliminate non-wealthy competitors and further the profitable (for the RIAA) top-40 format and its handful of artists.

        Thanks but not thanks.
  • by blair1q (305137) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @11:58AM (#3558862) Journal
    while webcasters argued that the proposed rates were way too high, the RIAA argued that they were way too low.

    That made something click, here.

    It seems to me that, rather than getting the producer and consumer together to negotiate a fair-market price, the RIAA lobbied to get the government to impose a price.

    For how long has the music economy been socialist? Is our intolerance of the RIAA limited to its bullying and selfishness, or can it be extended to this attempt to corrupt the freedom of commerce itself?

    --Blair
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Well, by some analyes, they are meeting in restraint of trade to even have a RIAA. But clearly there is no willingness to enforce the Sherman Antitrust Act on these big political donors.
    • For how long has the music economy been socialist?


      For quite a while. This is hardly their first attack on the free market. The DMCA and whatever the SSSCA is called this week are blatantly anti-capitalist; their primary goal is to use government guns to protect their outdated business models from new competitors.

    • You miss a huge point here: if the music economy were truly capitalist, there would never have been independent internet radio because the RIAA could simply refuse to license their content. What is at issue here is compulsory licensing: the government requires that the RIAA license their content to anyone who wants to broadcast it, and they set the fee.

      To reiterate: This is not the government propping up the RIAA with subsidies. If the RIAA had their way, there would be no fee at all, because they would only license content to their subsidiaries. The government steps in on behalf of independent broadcasters to force the RIAA to license to everyone, and they are arguing over how much the cost of that should be.
      • On the other hand, if our society was truly capitalist, maybe there wouldn't be copyright law in the first place. The existence of a law to provide (with varying degrees of success) a reward for the creation of new content is, when you think about it, more socialist than capitalist.

      • ACtually in a perfect capatalist economy the RIAA would not exist as collusion could not happen.
      • If the music economy were truly capitalist, the RIAA wouldn't lobby congress to force broadcasters to pay the RIAA even if the songs played aren't owned by RIAA member labels.
    • For how long has the music economy been socialist? Is our intolerance of the RIAA limited to its bullying and selfishness, or can it be extended to this attempt to corrupt the freedom of commerce itself?

      Since the music economy has taken something that was completely free (as in freedom) for the first 3 million years of humanity's existence, and locked it down under copyright for the last couple of centuries or so, one answer (in which socialism is defined as a government mandated, command economy ... a definition in common usage in the United States) would be two centuries or so, give or take.

      Essentially ever since we started granting authors and publishers artificial monopolies on their works in the, possibly misguided, assumption that it was necessary in order to foster creativity and expand the public commons (centuries of opposing evidence containing such greats as Michealangelo, Bach, Mozart, and William Shakespear nothwithstanding). So long as the government is using its coercive powers to impose scarcity and restriction where no such natural barriers exist, we will have a media economy that is, effectively, a command economy.

      It should come as no surprise that the parties involved in a command economy have to go to the government to have their rates set and their operating parameters defined. "Free" in any sense of the word, be it market, price, or freedom, has little if anything to do with the situation our approach to artistic compensation via monopoly copyrights has created.
      • Correct, although none of this would be an issue if the artists didn't desire to apply for copyright and work through existing distribution channels. Government has never forced an artist to "lock down" their work via copyright. If this were so, Linux wouldn't exist at all - since you'd be required to place it under some form of copyright, and retain exclusive rights to the OS.

        I'm no more pleased with the state of the "music industry" than anyone else here is -- but there are still plenty of options for artists to bypass the established system. Most don't due to greed.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Pass a bill to outlaw webcasters is an idea from J. Jonah Jameson to stop Spiderman.
    • It seems to me that, rather than getting the producer and consumer together to negotiate a fair-market price, the RIAA lobbied to get the government to impose a price.


      For how long has the music economy been socialist?

      For as long as there has been compulsory licensing, where anyone can bypass the owner and the need to negotiate.

  • ...or maybe another location, but something to bear in mind. Yeah, when something is played on good ol' airwave radio, the songwriter is paid. But the labels aren't being paid by the stations when a song is played - rather, the labels are paying the stations for (effectively? you decide) promoting their music. I still haven't figured out why the RIAA thinks they should be paid for webcasters promoting music that may or may not be from RIAA-stable artists. They're not getting that out of airwave radio.

  • but definitely, this is just a lull in the skirmish. Time to reload and keep the pressure on for equitable royalties (equitable to the performers and to the webcasters).
  • It appears from the order that over the next 30 days, the Libraian of Congress has the job of determining the licensing charges that will be the final descision.
    Does anyone have an idea of what the counter proposal to the CARP recommendations will be?
  • If the RIAA gets royalty rates that effectively shut down webcasts of music it controls, then that would be good news for anyone wanting to webcast independent or unsigned artists. Sure, you could set up an Internet radio station that only plays non-RIAA music, but you wouldn't get much attention with all the other stuff there.

    Of course, if people start listening to non-RIAA stuff online, the RIAA will rethink their royalty system.
    • indy music wont have any competition from the riaa bands. there will be a pretty clear dividing line here that may persuade some artists to not sign up with a corporate label if they otherwise would. if internet radio becomes a big oulet for music, these artists would not want to miss out on it.

      of course as soon as that started happening, the RIAA would clammor for internet broadcasting licenses, audits of broadcasters a la BSA, and/or whatever else they do to destroy anyone that threatens thier monopoly. but that doesnt mean they will suceed.

    • I started listening to 3wk.com at work recently for the hell of it and was surprised to find out how different it was. First of all, unlike FM, there are no noisy stretches of cheesy LOUD and painful commercials from local businesses like tire salesmen and ripoff dating services. Once in a while a guy with a creepy voice comes on and gives a little spiel about the RIAA and how you should write your Senator, but that's it. And instead of hearing the same mass marketed tiny selection of force-fed boy band / Britney Spears garbage that every FM station pummels you with over and over again, I didn't recognize many of the songs at all. I think it is a mixture of RIAA and non-RIAA artists. Some of it was crap. But a few songs were were really good, enough that I wrote down the artist/album/song title that the site displays while each song is playing. For about half of them, you don't even need a spyware-riddled p2p client to find MP3s- just use Google to find the band's web site and download MP3s right from there completely legally. You can hear what each track on their album sounds like before you decide whether or not to buy it.

      You would be surprised how many decent artists never get picked up by the cartel.

  • NPR Coverage (Score:4, Informative)

    by sphix42 (144155) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:03PM (#3558906) Homepage
    Diana Rehm covered this yesterday. There's an audio link here [wamu.org]
  • by zentec (204030) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .cetnez.> on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:04PM (#3558913)

    Webcasters want the same rates as normal broadcasters. That is, they pay a percentage of gross sales.

    So, if an Internet radio station has sales of zero, then they pay zero. If they have gross sales of a million bucks, then they pay the same fee as broadcasters that have gross sales of 5 million dollars.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Good thing this was rejected. It would have been an accounting impossibility.

    I run a net-radio over UDP. Which means, I know how many packets I send out, but not how many are recieved by listeners, or even how many people are trying to listen (if someone changes the station, we may not be notified). Additionally, we can send to independent retransmission sites that relay it onto even more listeners. Commercial radio stations get reasonalby accurate statistics on listenership. We can't. How could we make a good-faith guess at our numbers?
    • Radio Stations get their numbers, at least in Canada, from a survey group that then publishes "The Book", which gives a reasonably accurate accounting of what numbers a station has in listenership.

      They would have to do the same thing in an international forum to get similar type numbers...and I doubt that they are willing to spend the money to do so.

      ttyl
      Farrell

  • Where I live (the middle of no freaking where) I can get two radio stations. Therefore, Internet radio is a huge blessing to me. One of my favorite stations is an anime music one, so I listen to that constnatly. When this CARP stuff came to my attention it wa the first time I have ever written to a congressman.

    I for one am glad that this got shot down and hopefully something more sensible comes up.

    For the record: With internet radio I've tuned into a number of different anime shows and bought some DVDs and I am activly seeking out some of the shows dvds.
    Without internet radio i'd never have had the ability to get exposed to hard to find music and therefore couldn't buy anything.
    :)
  • Good news... but (Score:4, Interesting)

    by tezzery (549213) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:10PM (#3558961)
    This is definitely good news. At least it proves that the copyright office won't be easily swayed by the RIAA's demands. As far as the whole independent music thing goes, i believe it's a very good thing for independent music.. in the longrun that is. The bad thing is that if the approved rates are outrageous, the only stations that will be able to afford them are the ones backed by big companies such as broadcast.com and spinner.. etc. which is pretty much the same thing that happened to FM radio with monsters like clearchannel buying out all the small stations. They're the reason why there's 5 cookie-cutter station formats around the country. The good thing is that maybe this is a wake-up call to artists/labels and independent stations/media. Maybe it's finally time to move away from cookie-cutter programming and pay attention to independent labels and artists.. We've already made a big move with the Internet by overcoming the RIAA's monopoly with distributors, and college/internet stations have always done it to a certain extent.. True, at first listeners might not pay attention to it. But give it a few years.. This is only the beginning.
  • royalty rates of fractions of pennies ($.0014) as the CARP originally proposed is not the way that things should work. not that i have the answer as to how they should work, but i will not participate in pay-per-use/view media. just drop CD prices and let the public do the advertising for your sorry asses. the promotional value of a song that someone enjoys hearing for free is worth far more than $.0014.

  • by dave-fu (86011) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:19PM (#3559037) Homepage Journal
    kurthanson.com [kurthanson.com] is the homepage for the Radio and Internet Newsletter (RAIN), a fine spot for up-to-date information on what's going on in the world of webcasting.
    Found both of these links at WFMU [wfmu.org], aka numero uno webcasting radio station in the world.
    Gotta love the fact that the RIAA wants to see that webcasters pay fees on top of the ASCAP/BMI fees that "real" radio stations do without getting any of the payola.
    At any rate, it'll be interesting to see what the Librarian of Congress does in the next 30 days.
  • ... my wife is going to get really mad at me for all the CDs i buy after listening to Radio Paradise [radioparadise.com]. i think this site has caused more havoc in my checking account than any other music-related stimulus since the advent of the CD player!

    as several posters mentioned, we can't view this as a victory - not yet, probably not ever. the RAC has many fights ahead, and anyone who listens to internet radio should try to help: details here [recordinga...lition.com].
  • by dschuetz (10924) <slash@d a v i d . d a s n et.org> on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @12:20PM (#3559048) Homepage
    As an aside, whatever happened to the multicast backbone? I seem to recall that "they" were working on some kind of an IP-level packet redistribution service (my words) that would enable an application to tell its closest router "hey, I wanna listen to 244.123.45.6", and it'd then ask it's upstream router the same thing, etc., until it was able to get a copy of the stream routed to the requesting client.

    Or something remotely like that.

    Anyway, it seemed like a terrific idea, 'cause the content provider wouldn't have to server a thousand different, unique streams, all with the same content -- it'd just send a single stream to an MBone address, and anyone who wanted to receive it could ask for it.

    I just did a quick check on it, and only found 6-year-old FAQs and such. Has it died? Has it been overcome by events with IPv6?

    I ask 'cause it occurred to me that any webcaster broadcasting on mbone wouldn't be *able* to tell how many people were listening. A sort of end-run around some of CARP, as it were...
    • The original MBONE's routing architecture wasn't scalable. More sophisticated routing schemes have been devised fairly recently but to my knowledge there are next to no ISPs that offer multicast connectivity to consumers.

      Marshal Eubanks of Multicast Tech [multicasttech.com] did an interview on cnet radio (go here [online-tonight.com] and search for multicast) he was pretty optimistic about multicast being deployed. He gave the startling figure that 20% of broadband users had access to the multicast internet. I was shocked by this because I have scoured the 'net looking for a consumer isp that would offer it to consumers and haven't found anything. Anyone have any info?
      • The original MBONE's routing architecture wasn't scalable. More sophisticated routing schemes have been devised fairly recently but to my knowledge there are next to no ISPs that offer multicast connectivity to consumers.

        And given that corporate mergers are resulting in a significant fraction of the ISPs being owned by content provider megacorps, don't expect them to be in any rush to deploy them, or to make the input accessable to end users (rather than just the media corps) if they ARE deployed.

        There's probably more money to be made by the megacorps by promoting mom-and-pop "internet radio" than by blocking it. But until the media decision makers have an epiphany the dogs will likely remain in the manger.
    • Multicast keeps going. There are now many multicast connected IPV4 networks exchanging MBGP routes, but yes, very few networks multicast down to the end-user.

      I've asked a few Internet2 people about multicast, and while the backbone certainly is, the "last mile" to users often is not.

      I was recently working for a company that was delivering multicast webcasts from major streaming providers over satellite to ISPs. But most of us were laid off, I don't know what is going on now.

      There are a few companies to help you get going with multicast such as Multicast Technologies [multicasttech.com]. Also the GEANT [dante.net] network in Europe is multicast capable. And here is a list of active SDR [ucsb.edu] listings, kind of a "tv guide" for multicast.
  • Now I can continue my evil plot to deliver subliminal messages to webcast listeners to buy M$ products. hee hee who who ha ha ha ha!!
  • I did my part and wrote my senator and Representative asking them to not pass the CARP recommendations. I am happy that they came to their senses and rejected that awful proposal. Still it is something to think about that the government is becoming more aware of how information is exchanged on the net and working to pass FAIR and JUST laws to regulate it. I think this type of legislation will only take time to eventually be implemented.

    A search on google for Internet Radio Returns 2,660,000 Hits [google.com]. This is some indication of how popular Internet Radio is becoming. I tried to gather places on the Net whom have added the wonderful news to their site already, but it seems the only one I can find at the moment is the link given and this one Radio And Internet Newsletter [kurthanson.com].
  • Man that sucks I use carp quite often. It really helps see my error on my cgi scripts. Oh wait.. What are you talking about?
  • So if the RIAA forces these high royalties on internet radio stations, then there'll be less stations to listen to, less variety, so less people will be satisfied with the selection. Soooooo, that would just encourage more people to just download MP3s so they can listen to what they want...

    Don't screw the customers, or the customers will screw you.
    • So if the RIAA forces these high royalties on internet radio stations, then there'll be less stations to listen to, less variety, so less people will be satisfied with the selection. Soooooo, that would just encourage more people to just download MP3s so they can listen to what they want...

      The RIAA also wanted to make the distribution of MP3 impossible by firing through the SSSCA to implement technology limitations that keep you from copying ANY music, also they wanted to plunge their dirty hands into the making of the Homeland Security bill. Their contribution to the bill was to make music to be considered "an act of terrorism" [I had a link to a news article but now I can't find it].

      So any way you look at it, if (when?) the RIAA has their way, you'll have no choice except to be stuck with them.

  • Newsbytes article (Score:4, Interesting)

    by EReidJ (551124) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @01:07PM (#3559423) Homepage
    Here [washingtonpost.com] is a Newsbytes story on the ruling. A little bit more hard-news information about the decision and its likely impact.
  • whooo hooo!! This is great =) I've been campaigning for months to keep net radio from dying.
  • StreamRipper (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tommy_S (580744) <buddy@tomcat.umsl.edu> on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @01:17PM (#3559493)
    The nice thing about internet radio is the ability to use something like StreamRipper and save every song, properly named and tagged, as a .mp3 file. I've been doing a lot of this recently as it appeared internet radio was perhaps about to end and I wanted to snatch up a bunch of the music while I still had the chance. I'm on a high speed connection, so last week for a couple days I was actually running 5 instances of StreamRipper at once, each connected to a different "radio station". Within just a couple work days I had snagged multiple gigabytes of 128kbit mp3 files. I think what I've just described is why the RIAA and such are making such a fuss.
    • That might be one reason, but I think the biggest reason behind the attempt to squash independent web radio is promotion. Radio is still a big way for the RIAA to promote bands and concerts. To them and the evil that is Clear Channel, _any_ competition (read, consumer choice) is a bad thing.
  • by rustman (143533) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @01:25PM (#3559535) Homepage
    You may have read today that the Librarian of Congress, based upon the recommendation of the Register of Copyrights, issued an Order rejecting the Panel's determination proposing rates and terms for these licenses. In such cases, the law provides that the Librarian shall issue his final determination within 30 days of his decision to reject the Panel's proposed rates and terms. The final determination is due on June 20, 2002.

    We hope this means that the Librarian has realized that not all current parties were properly represented at the CARP hearings, and the proposed rates and reporting requirements were unreasonable and did not represent a market rate.

    Webcasters want a royalty rate that is fair and equitable to all sides - a rate based on revenues, in the 3% range, much like the royalties paid to the composers of the songs now through ASCAP and BMI. The rejected proposal would have killed the market by wiping out most if not all of the industry.

    Webcasters also want reduced reporting requirements - Song Name, Artist, Album and Label where available. Not the 25 or so data points asked for by the RIAA.

    We do not know what will happen next. This ruling may even mean that another CARP hearing will be held, this time we hope it will be more accessible to small internet broadcasters. (Previous CARPs required all participants to share the costs associated with it, which came out to about $300,000 for each participant.)

    But internet broadcasters are happy that we can stay on the air for another 30 days. If the decision went the other way, many stations would have started shutting down this week.
  • the RIAA argued that they were way too low.

    Does anyone have a link to the this argument?
    Should be good for a few laughs.

    -
  • I'm trying to look at the original CARP report [copyright.gov], linked to from the LOC page [copyright.gov], but the PDF seems to be either broken or password-protected. (Ghostview doesn't like it, in any case.)

    Has anyone put up a mirror of the contents in HTML or plain text?

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I'm a musician, and I have been approached by various studios to be recorded or whatever. I for one am getting REALLY tired of watching no talent people getting rich off of other people's talents. If you want to support your favorite musician, go to their shows. THAT is where they make their money. A band only gets about $1-3 dollars per $20 CD. So every time you buy a CD you're paying on average $18 for executives to tell you what's good and what's not AND to pay for the RIAA to "buff" politicians and beaurocrates (I know I spelled it wrong) to pass laws that are like what they are trying to do right now.

    Don't get me wrong. I buy the CDs of bands I like, but those are few these days since there are so many bands putting out 1 good song and the rest suck.

    There is a bright side to all this. With the advent of the internet and P2P software, bands that have the desire and talent can make it without a recording studio. Nickelback is an EXCELLENT example of that. Granted their site is on NT and isn't working because of NT (and many of it's so called admins, not ALL NT admins are bad, don't get me wrong) doesn't work properly. But if I'm not mistaken, they have made it big without the help of any recording label even though they appear to be with one now. So I say, look around, find the music you like in whatever means you like, JUST DON'T BUY CDS!! Screw the recording studios. Don't give them money to try to make laws making everything in this world more difficult.

    I say again, this is from a musician that has almost been signed several times. Musicians make their money on tour, not from the CDs
  • spin doctoring (Score:3, Interesting)

    by neoThoth (125081) on Tuesday May 21, 2002 @02:41PM (#3560088) Homepage
    i'm usually more aware of this type of legislation but was caught off guard by this. So I did some digging at RIAA's site (better to know your enemy) and found this spin control document [riaa.org].

    My favorite quote:

    In recent weeks, the CARP rates have become the subject of an intense misinformation and propaganda campaign (so called "grassroots" but really ginned up by sophisticated lobbyists in D.C.)

    nahhh it's not grass roots... it's ginned up by sophisticated lobbyists!

    Hil Rosenator is smoking some crack if she expects people to really believe this but it is interesting. Whom did they have in mind?
    Well later on in the document they specifically name MTV, Microsoft, AOL/TW. With the exception of MTV (who's parent company may have some quarrels with RIAA) it seems like technology vs. copyright all over again. I just wish the tech companies would realize they are fighting this together and publicly unify against RIAA and other media hordes (whores?) who have clearly put aside internal bickering to concentrate on world domination through Project "Nickle and Dime" the fuck out of everyone.

  • You can't spell C-R-A-P without C-A-R-P.
  • I'm too young, but remember when it was a scandal if a station was +paid+ to play a certain artists' music?

    My local KISS-FM (yes, just like yours thanks to Clear Channel) played that damn Eminem song all day and night while saying "WE ARE GOING TO PLAY THE WHOLE ALBUM THROUGH"

    People used to actually do that - it was how the album was meant to be played dammit! It made me want to call and play the album for them :)

    I know my rant is off topic, so here is my attempt to bring it back on course. If this type of thing ever goes through I think we should take the current FCC FM license prices (which are high enough) and just times them by 29374938920 so that no one gets radio.

    Then the RIAA will just send us a shopping list or deduct money from our checking accounts daily for living...
  • by tadas (34825)
    Am I the only one who initially read it as "Copyright Office Rejects Crap Recommendations" and thought, "Wow! Stuff that Matters!"?
  • Internet Radio will prevail, Internet radio forever. I still stand the chance of starting up my very own netradio station/site.
  • I've searched, and I've been unable to find any information telling me what radio stations currently pay to air a song.

    Anyone know?

    Jason Pollock
  • by gregormarkowitz (580851) on Wednesday May 22, 2002 @12:28AM (#3563679)
    My web station has been on the air for over four years straight. This decision was supposed to have been finalized by the LOC a couple of other times in the last few years, so this delay is no real surprise.

    It is clear to me that any and all delay in the process helps the RIAA members and harms the webcasters for two reasons: During the three-and-a-half (so far) years wait for the price of music to be set, it has been impossible for a webcaster to make a real business plan, to create a spreadsheet that describes their business in numbers, to pitch potential investors, or to sign any serious contracts with advertisers or other funders, thus crippling the fledgling industry. On the other hand, the record industry needs lots of time to get their act together to move in with their own outfits.

    As a webcater, I am coming to realize that unlike most of the people in broadcasting, I am a BUYER and not a freeloader. I am going to demand some respect from any label trying to get on my station. Tribute even.

    I am afraid that the RIAA is going to price their member's works out of the market. If I can buy gas at one station for $1.50 or go next door and pay $15.00, where do you think I will tend to pull in to fill up?

    Today I was on Paul Allen's TechTV when the statement from the Librarian of Congress came out. I deleted a RIAA member property song from the play rotation on my station, on camera, and they aired it! Click Click "Well, no royalties for Lowen and Navarro, no promotion, no exposure, no airplay, no CD sales. Too bad. Too expensive."

  • by Kalvos (137750)

    Our show, Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar [kalvos.org] begins its 8th year on Saturday. We've been on line since September of 1995, with RealAudio 1.0.

    We've been both broadcast and cybercast (archived, not streamed, for the first few years), and were there three years before the DMCA.

    Yes, we were opposed to the CARP rules and gave them our Golden Bruce Award this year [kalvos.org], but we also opposed the DMCA and praised the Dutch rights agency BUMA (which allows imperfect cybercasts with simple licensing, and none at all at low streaming rates.

    Our problem has been living through all these issues. We began operating with the understanding that we were a niche program (new nonpop) working as a research site as well as a music site (we won the year 2000 ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award, even after the DMCA).

    But the DMCA contained no grandfathering and had no exceptions for educational/research use. In 1998, before the passage of the law, we started getting releases from composers and labels (which you can read about here) [kalvos.org] as a pre-emptive measure. We didn't receive all of them, which still meant, with the advent of the retroactive CARP rules (see the abbreviated list in a previous post), the impossible requirement to research all our logs, including on computers long out of service and whose logs were long gone.

    On average, by my guesswork calculation (where Britney's "I'm a Slave 4 U" and Beethoven's "Missa Solemnis" are both considered "songs") our yearly payment to the RIAA (which does

    not

    represent most nonpop artists) would have been $5,160, more than a dozen times a typical license for the same 900-watt radio station we broadcast from.

    So the Librarian of Congress's rejection of CARP is good news, if only for the interim. True commercial cybercasts are another issue, and the DMCA and CARP rules are a burden for them as well; we broadcast and cybercast within the nonprofit/educational arena (on a community station with volunteer staff) and also provide a true research site, but CARP swept us in with the rest.

    I don't offer any new insights here, only a sense of relief, and a place to say them.

    Dennis Bathory-Kitsz
    "Kalvos" of Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar [kalvos.org]

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